By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist July 17, 2013 at 5:17PM
You could think the female lead in "Gone Girl" was on the level of pop culture phenomenon Lisbeth Salander – and who knows, maybe it could be when all is said in done – but it speaks to the allure of David Fincher, that seemingly every major actress in Hollywood is throwing elbows to get a chance for the gig. Natalie Portman, Charlize Theron and Emily Blunt have already been named as contenders, with Rosamund Pike emerging as a frontrunner earlier today, but it's hardly a done deal as more actresses are surfacing.
According to Variety, Abbie Cornish, Olivia Wilde and uh, Julianne Hough ("Rock Of Ages," "Footloose," "Safe Haven") have submitted audition tapes for the role. Based on the critically acclaimed best-selling novel by Gillian Flynn, whomever wins the juicy part will star opposite Ben Affleck, who plays a former magazine journalist who moves back home to Carthage, Missouri, to open a bar with his sister after falling into financial hardship. But he becomes a prime suspect when his wife goes missing on their fifth wedding anniversary.
Apparently, Theron isn't pursuing the part and scheduling could count out both Portman and Blunt. Pike is on Fincher's list, but he has yet to meet her and something tells us Fox will want to have a say on the female lead as well. As THR noted earlier today, Fincher might have the kind of leeway he's used to, as they indicate "it's not free rein" for the filmmaker, with Variety suggesting budget could come into play too. Affleck is an expensive lead, so another A-list name could be out of the question.
We can only imagine more contenders will pop up soon, but with a fall shoot looming, we'd guess a decision will be made shortly, as Fincher is already scouting locations.